tv DW News PBS February 23, 2016 6:00pm-6:31pm PST
brent: this is dw news live from berlin. president obama: today, the department is submitting our plan to congress to close guantanamo once and for all. brent: u.s. president barack obama submits his plan to close guantanamo bay prison and send its prisoners to prisons in the u.s.. it is a pluggable bombshell and an election year. we will ask why now? also, is the man who is supposed to maintain order in chechnya turning into a terrorist mastermind? that is the accusation of a damming report claiming he is a
threat to russia security. has the kremlin lost control of a one-time ally? and these candy bars are barred, for now. the u.s. chocolate maker mars issues a sweeping recall effecting 55 nations around the globe. we will tell you why. brent: good to have you with us. it was a campaign promise that helped sweep barack obama into the white house in 2008. now, obama has submitted a plan to congress that would see guantanamo bay prison finally closed. under the plan, some 35 prisoners will be transferred to other countries, leaving about 60 detainees at the facility. obama wants those remaining detainees to be sent to prisons
on u.s. soil. however, that practice has been banned by congress and 2011. in his speech today, obama talked about the cost of keeping one, going. the u.s. spends $450 million every year to detain the prisoners. our correspondent has this report on a plan that was first proposed almost eight years ago. president obama: there we go. reporter: one of barack obama pass first acts as president was to sign an executive order to close guantanamo bay. he has been trying to shut the prison since then, those ideas walked by republican lawmakers. with the end of his presidency insight, obama has been giving it another go. president obama: it is clear the prison at guantanamo bay does not advance our national
security. it undermines it. this is not just my opinion. this is the opinion of experts, the opinion of many in our military. it is counterproductive to our fight against terrorist because they use it as propaganda in their efforts to recruit. reporter: the guantanamo bay prison was set up to house foreign terror suspects in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. it is still open because the republican-controlled congress has locked an obvious way of closing it by banning the transfer of detainees to u.s. soil. some of the 91 remaining, does not being transferred to their home countries, are deemed too dangerous to release. obama says they should be held in the united states. president obama: we are going to work to find a secure location in the united states to hold remaining detainees. reporter: it is a big ambition, but the president plan has not
specified where that secure location would be. brent: our correspondent gave us this assessment on whether obama plus plan will pass through congress. guest: it is not looking good. a few republicans have spoken out publicly after obama gave his speech and said no way. they do not want to see this guantanamo detention center being closed. ted cruz, who is running for president, said he would never close guantanamo. one of the reasons is not just the fact that congress as a majority for the republicans, passed a law that the obama administration is not allowed to send any of the detainees on american soil. the laws could be changed but it is not looking like he would get a majority for this. brent: nearly one year ago, the
outspoken russian opposition leader was on an evening stroll of his girlfriend when he was shot dead on a bridge near the kremlin. now, another opposition activist says he is certain who was behind the assassination -- a chechen leader who runs the fiefdom at the behest of president vladimir putin. our moscow correspondent picks up the story here. reporter: he's the chechen leader with a strong man image. he posts videos on his instagram account of him boxing and praying. the former separatist rebel was appointed leader nine years ago by another man with a grip on power -- president vladimir putin's present -- critics say he has been given the power for
stamping out resistance and fighting islamist terrorism. >> the regime is a considerable threat to the security of our country. it's a separate independent state which get a huge amount of money. it has built its own army and has stopped complying with russian law. he can do what he wants and putin will not put the brakes on him. reporter: he has thousands of men under his control in chechnya. his opponents say their power extends far beyond the region's borders to moscow, where his associates are linked to the murder of an opposition leader. one year ago, the opposition leader was walking across this bridge when he was shot and killed. one of the men described and they murder is being described as a true patriot of russia. one gear -- one day later,
vladimir putin gave him one of the country's highest awards for what he described as many years of diligent work. >> last year, boris was killed and there was no reaction or only and an adequate one until the public began complaining. only then did putin begin to make statement saying it was unacceptable. reporter: more recently, he published a video of the former prime minister and another in the crosshairs of a snipers rifle. those public threats indicate the chechen leader is out of control. >> indulging his appetite show how confused the kremlin is. they have created a monster and have no idea how to deal with him. reporter: the relationship between the two men goes back
several years. in that time, the chechen has consolidated his image as leader. he is coming up for reelection later this year, but with no real candidate to succeed him, he could rule under vladimir putin for many years to come. brent: joining me in the studio is the head of the berlin office for the society of threatened peoples, and ngo that advocates for minorities around the world. it is good to have you back here with us. your organization has reported extensively on chechnya. our use surprised by this report that claims he is a master terrorist? guest: we are not surprised at all. this is not the first time and this is not the first murder. this is not the first time russian security agents, the russian police is not able to do anything against him and his
power to murder opposition figures in russia. brent: let's talk about how he would have benefited. one year later, do we know what reason he could have had for having him killed? guest: we can only speculate about this. we have the impression that he is 100% loyal to putin. everyone who raises questions here is considered a personal enemy. brent: would you say we are not just talking about him wanting someone to be murdered -- she's maybe following orders from the kremlin. is that clear in your mind? guest: that is quite clear. i would say so. he is sort of on the forefront and always pushes a little
further than the official kremlin policy can. you see this in his role in interior politics and exterior politics. one thing a colleague has discovered is 30,000 fighters in chechnya, they are the best trained men in all of russian territory. brent: what do you buy about what we are hearing about ukraine and now syria's that this model is now being taken to syria by putin. does that make sense to you? guest: the thing is we really fear for this to happen. it's a horrible scenario for syria. chechnya itself is a silent
graveyard. there is no parliament, there is no press, nothing which we consider a democracy. brent: as always, thank you for coming in and talking with us. russia and the united states say they have agreed on a provisional cease-fire in syria that would take effect on saturday. not all weapons would fall silent. jihadist groups like islamic state will be targeted, but can the cease-fire work? concerns remain given a recent spike in violence in the country. reporter: finally, some hope of a real cease-fire in damascus -- the knowledge that hundred thousands of their fellow syrians have been killed during five years of war and terror has worn down those living here. >> i hope the cease-fire takes
hold so the syrian people feel safe in the lead shed stops. these are the wishes of every syrian who loves their country. we hope the parties are serious, but there are so many involved that it makes it difficult. there cannot be a political solution with the bombardment, so the cease-fire should be a way to achieve that, to sit down and negotiate an end to this fighting and war. reporter: but that might be easier said than done. the cease-fire excludes the islamic state terror group and syria pass al qaeda branch. and it isn't clear how the cease-fire would be controlled. on top of that, turkey wants to continue shelling the kurdish melissa -- kurdish melissa -- kurdish militia inside syria. >> you cannot make the difference between a good terrorist a bad terrorists.
that is equal to supporting terrorism. everyone should understand you cannot fight terrorism with such a stance. all the syrian opposition groups have until friday to say whether they will abide by the cease-fire. if everything goes to plan, that begins at midnight on saturday morning. brent: here are some of the other stories making headlines. the un's secretary-general has met with the president of the randy in an attempt to resolve months of violence. the visit aims to promote dialogue between him and his opponents. the president one a third term angering opponents who said it was unconstitutional. the nigerian navy says it has rescued an oil tanker hijacked by pilots -- by pirates earlier this month. one pirate was killed in a nighttime operation and six
others were captured. the navy is searching for six others who escaped, taking hostages. at least one person is reported dead and several others injured at a massive explosion at at a power plant in southern england. the explosion took place 100 kilometers west of london. the coal and gas fire plan is operated by a german company. witnesses described the huge cloud of dust after part of the building collapsed. the u.s. presidential campaign returns to nevada for the republican caucus and the question isn't who will win but rather by how much. depending on which opinion poll you look at, donald trump holds a lead between 16 points and 26 points. that would make it three states in a row following new hampshire and south carolina. ted cruz will be battling for second place with his florida senate colleague.
brent: welcome back. live from berlin, our top story -- u.s. president barack obama has unveiled plans to close guantanamo bay prison and transfer the remaining 91 detainees to prisons in the u.s.. obama says guantanamo undermines u.s. security because terrorist organizations use it for propaganda purposes. the german and french foreign ministers have an in ukraine for the past two days trying to restore some sense of clinical stability there. reforms were on the agenda along with the simmering conflict in
eastern ukraine. with a fractured government and growing resentment, you can understand the german foreign minister's closing comment. ukrainian politics reminds one of a stump. reporter: and for demonstrators on kia's independence square are trying to keep up the pressure. they are demanding the resignation of the prime minister. he barely survived a vote of no confidence last week. even as he remains in parliament without majority support, he was the first to meet the german and french foreign ministers. then it was the turn of the president who has called for the prime minister's resignation. the power struggle in tf pits the oligarchs against reformers hoping for foreign assistance.
>> the economic reforms must be carried out on the basis of the dates agreed with the imf. and there must be a policy driven by the principal of zero tolerance for corruption. reporter: and the inability to an act reforms threatens the minsk agreement arbitrated by germany and france one year ago. >> there is still a great risk. that is why we are clearly telling the separatists in russia that the pressure must stop. because, in addition to a stable security situation, a political outlook is needed. and this is where the snag lies. the people in this transition zone have not been able to elect representatives democratically. for this to happen, kiev must pass an election law that
opposition is growing among ukrainians. >> the minsk agreement practically legalizes the crimes against the separatists. >> voting in the occupied areas makes no sense at all. reporter: for now, that is what the deal calls for. brent: are you in the mood for a hazardous snack? there's one story in particular to get your teeth into, but you don't want to choke. guest: on chocolate from mars -- they are recalling products from 50 countries. a piece of plastic was found in one of its chocolate bars. it includes snickers and some milky way bars. the company has traced a piece of plastic back to a dutch factory and an investigation is underway.
mars says it has issued a recall as a precaution. it affects germany, france and britain and further abroad -- but it does not extend to the u.s. just at a time when the british pound keeps falling, there's a news that the london stock exchange is seeking to create a large european force, but it had little immediate impact on the british currency. the question is will the merger give similar chance in the past. reporter: it is being billed as a merger of equals. but the board will be evenly split. they are by far the larger of the two with a market cap of 15 billion euros. the other valued at 10.5 million. if a merger were to come off, it would create the largest exchange operator in all of europe. it is not the first time they
have tried to get together. the last attempt fell through in 2005 when they failed in the it to buy up the lse. the germans turned to the new york stock exchange -- a megamerger that was too big for a doherty's. the latest attempt is led by the new ceo who is determined to take both groups to the top of the global league. markets like the idea and both companies shares surged on the announcement. guest: germany enjoyed a budget surplus last year but the neighbors of europe's biggest economy are not doing so well. they say if germany spent more, the whole block could you fit and the surplus has not been this high since reunification in 1990. solid growth has boosted tax revenues but the governments may well need that money. over half the companies it surveyed are pessimistic about the future.
the european union and the united states kicked off their 12th round of talks on the free trade deal on monday. so how are those going for europe? a leaked document reveals how far they are going to reach a final deal. reporter: fruit, vegetables and clothing are part of the eu's secret offer. it proposes doing away with import tariffs on thousands of roddick's. currently, duties on pairs run at 6%. clothes are up to 20%. aubergine almost 30%. this leaked document gives a rare insight and reveals how far negotiators went to eliminate duties. but someone who monitors negotiations says he is missing washington's commitment and sees efforts to water down a deal.
>> i am totally opposed to try to get only these items with the united states we have no problem with. that could be no solution. reporter: entering a decisive phase in the talks in brussels, a list of thorny items that remain as long as a handshake by the chief negotiators, the mutual recognition for standards is a great concern for the german engineering industry. >> for us as medium-sized companies, it would be a catastrophe if the entire% company would be scrapped or we need another two or three years for a deal. reporter: so far, the u.s. list of products that could go duty free is likely shorter, including peppers, fish and raspberries. but it will take more to reach a final deal. both sides have to be willing to
step up to the plate. guest: a british exit from the eu is a frightening prospect for firms. several companies have written an open letter warning against the effects of a brexit. they say it would steer away foreign investment, cost jobs, and in danger the entire economy. that is your business update for now. brent: we will talk to you later on in the day and talk about why i am keeping my snickers bar inside the rapper today. of all creatures at rome this planet, the rat is reason for repulsion in just about all societies in the world. imagine a rat as big as a cat and you have the stuff of nightmares. but they are performing a task far better than dogs and humans
and metal detectors can and they are saving lives and limbs. reporter: this nosy fellow is looking for food scraps. he is on the hunt for tnt. his superior sense of smell makes him a perfect candidate for clearing landmines. another advantage is his size. he is too small to detonate a mine. it offers cambodians the chance to reclaim lands and livelihoods. >> there are many benefits to losing -- there are many benefits to using rats. the rats can clear 200 square meters of land in 20 or 25 minutes. whereas if we use the manual method, it would take two or three days to clear this same area.
reporter: it's the only one in the world of its kind. the organization was founded in the teen 98 by a belgian who recognized the potential of his childhood that's. together, they have the mind millions of square meters of land. >> in mozambique we did quite well. but that being enough with our operation in and gora -- in and gora, we think it can be shifted from africa to asia. reporter: each area of land opens up new opportunities like farms and schools in a company recover -- in a country recovering from the war. brent: after a short break, i
>> we have put together a great show for you today. before we get started, let's take a quick look at what is coming up in the next half hour. san sebastian is a 2016 capital of culture. recycled art, one man from britain and his hubcap sculptures. clear perspectives, a berlin window cleaner and his photo collection. the city of san sebastian has recently completed opening celebrations as one of this year's european capitals of culture. located on the north coast of spain, it is home to a vibrancy and of cultural exprsi